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ON THE RECEIPT OF
MY MOTHER'S PICTURE
OUT OF NORFOLK.
THE GIFT OF MY COUSIN ANN BODHAM.
Oh that those lips had language! Life has pass'd
Faithful remembrancer of one so dear,
Shall steep me in Elysian reverie,
My mother! when I learn'd that thou walt dead,
away, And, turning from my nurs'ry window, drew A long, long sigh, and wept a last adieu! But was it such? It was.-Where thou art gone Adieus and farewells are a found unknown. May I but meet thee on that peaceful shore, The parting sound shall pass my lips no more! Thy maidens griev'd themselves at my concern, Oft gave me promise of a quick return. What ardently I wis’d, I long believ'd, A nd, disappointed still, was still deceiv'd; By disappointment every day beguild, Dupe of to-morrow even from a child. Thus many
fad to-morrow came and went, Till, all my stock of infant sorrows spent, [ learn'd at last submission to my lot, But, though I less deplor'd thee, ne'er forgot,
Where once we dwelt our name is heard no more, Children not thine have trod my nurs’ry floor; And where the gard'ner Robin, day by day, Drew me to school along the public way, Delighted with my bauble coach, and wrapt In scarlet mantle warm, and velvet capt, 'Tis now become a history little known, That once we call'd the pastral house our own. Short-liv'd poffeffion! but the record fair, That mem'ry keeps of all thy kindness there, Still outlives many a storm that has effac'd A thousand other themes less deeply trac’de Thy nightly visits to my chamber made, That thou might'st know me fafe and warmly
land; Thy morning bounties ere 1 left my home, The biscuit or confectionary plum; The fragrant waters, on my cheeks bestow'd, By thy own hand, till fresh they shone and glow'd: All this, and, more endearing still than all, Thy constant flow of love, that knew no fall, Ne'er roughen'd by those cataracts and breaks That humour interpos’d too often makes ; All this still legible in mem'ry's page, And still to be so to
age, Adds joy to duty, makes me glad to pay Such honours to thee as my numbers may;
Perhaps a frail memorial, but sincere,
Could time, his flight revers'd, restore the hours
-what here we call our life is such, So little to be lor'd, and thou so much, That I should ill requite thee to constrain Thy unbound spirit into bonds again.
Thou, as a gallant bark from Albion's coast (The storms all weather’d and the ocean cros’d) Shoots into port at some well-haven'd ille, Where spices breathe and brighter seasons smile, There fits quiescent on the floods that show Her beauteous form reflected clear below, While airs impregnated with incense play Around her, fanning light her streamers gay ; So thou, with fails how swift! haft reach'd the shore “ Where tempests never beat nor billows roar *,”
And thy lor'a confort on the dang'rous tide Oi life, long lince, has anchor'd at thy fide. But me, scarce hoping to attain that rest, Always from port withheld, always distress?dMe howling winds drive devious, tempeft toss’d, Sails ript, seams op’ning vide, and compass lost, And day by day fome current's thwarting force Sets me more distant from a prosperous course. But oh the thought, that thou art safe, and he! That thought is joy, arrive what may to me. My boast is not that I deduce my birth From loins enthron'd and sulers of the earth ; But higher far my proud pretensions riseThe fon of parents pass'd into the skies. And now, farewell-time, unrevok'd, has run His wonted course, yet what I wilh'd is done. By contemplations help, not fought in vain, I seem have liv'd my childhood o'er again; To have renew'd the joys that once were mine, Without the fin of violating thine ; And, while the wings of fancy still are free, And I can view this mimic shew of thee, Time has but half succeeded in his theft Thyself removed, thy power to soothe me left.